1. Solo cups will transform you into a Lego:
Just paint a box and cut holes for your head and arms, then glue the cups to the front. Write “LEGO” on the cups if you really want your friends to get it without thinking.
2. Use a paper bag to make a safari vest:
And cut up a paper towel roll for binoculars; full instructions from Real Simple. The example shown is for a child, of course, but you could size up for an adult. Warning: costume not ideal for rainy weather.
3. If have even an ounce of hipster in you, you probably have what you need to make a Where’s Waldo costume:
All you need is a striped shirt, red hat, and big glasses.
4. An old hoodie can become an easy (and cozy) animal outfit with some white felt or paper. A wolf, for instance:
If you have matching sweatpants you can stick a tail on them. Martha Stewart, Halloween master, provides the instructions.
7. Do you happen to have balloons lying around? Awesome, you’re grapes.
Just know before you go out that nobody will be able to come within a foot of you on all sides. Which could actually be a plus. Full directions (not that you really need them) here.
9. Use Elmer’s glue and food coloring to make fake wounds:
You could be a zombie, a stab victim, or anything else that bleeds. Find out how here.
10. Because we’re all totally over Big Bird, use pieces of felt or paper to make this Kermit the Frog costume:
Full directions here. Ping-pong balls would make great eyes if you’re not into needle-felting.
11. Take an old dress you don’t wear anymore and draw on it with Sharpie to make a pumpkin:
Orange is preferable, but it’ll be dark so you can fudge it.
12. Get together some friends and old sheets and be a museum:
The nice thing about modern art is that it doesn’t matter if your painting skills are lacking. Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories is responsible for this costume, which seems like it would be even more fun to make than to wear.
13. Also in the realm of art, you could always be Magritte’s famous “Son of Man” painting:
Wear a suit, borrow a bowler hat from that guy you hang out with even though he owns a bowler hat, and tie a fake plastic apple to the brim (a real apple is too heavy and won’t hang properly).
15. Use black pantyhose to make your wings and you’re a bee:
Just add yellow stripes to a black t-shirt (tape or fabric works well) and make antennae out of pipe cleaners.
16. Shop your closet for a Rosie the Riveter look:
You’ll need a red bandana, red lipstick, and a denim shirt and jeans (known in some circles as a “Canadian tuxedo”).
17. A t-shirt and some artful cutting make a dramatic skeleton:
FInd out how here.
18. This jet pack looks complicated but it’s actually just empty two-liter bottles:
Directions available at Instructables. If you don’t want to cut up a purse for its handles, just use fabric, rope, or even duct tape to make the straps.
19. Cardboard and extra clothes are all that’s needed for this roller coaster costume:
This is either the strangest or most adorable couple outfit of all time. Find out how to make it here.
20. Be a cardboard box crocodile:
Again, this will impair your range of motion and also probably your vision, but we all have to make sacrifices sometimes. Get the instructions from Evil Mad Scientist Laboratories. Warning: this costume is also not likely to hold up in rain.
21. Or a garbage bag witch:
This one could get sweaty. Directions available from Martha Stewart.